Class of 2020 students return virtually for Alumni Day


A virtual Alumni Day connects past CHS graduates with current upperclassmen.

Ella Lukowiak

At the end of last year, CHS upperclassmen were met with familiar faces once again: Class of 2020 graduates on Alumni Day. As with many other traditions this year, however, the entire event was held virtually. 

“We knew that we still wanted to do Alumni Day, but we also knew that doing it in person wouldn’t be an option for many COVID-caused reasons,” said senior class council member Francesca McCaffrey of West Long Branch. 

With any virtual event, no matter how many accommodations are put in place, there will always be certain aspects that cannot be replicated.

It’s always fun seeing your old friends on alumni day and then watching them get kicked out by a convenient fire drill, but we couldn’t exactly get that this year,” said senior class council member Nate Riehl of Wall Township.

McCaffrey agreed that upperclassmen may have missed getting the chance to visit with the alumni, but believes the content was about the same as in past years. 

“From a functional standpoint though, I don’t think that it was less informational or helpful than it has been in the past,” McCaffrey said.

However, there were several new topics covered this year that were not present in the past, such as COVID-19 protocols with students’ universities and colleges. 

Junior Lana Tomchuk of Middletown said that while it was helpful to hear about these things, she didn’t expect COVID-related discussions to dominate the event so heavily.

“I definitely gained some useful information from the event, although I am not sure it was as informational as I expected,” Tomchuk said. “I think COVID definitely took over the event.”

Riehl also explained that from the beginning everyone understood that the event was not going to be as informative as in past years. 

“Although I had a role in planning it, the council knew that there wouldn’t be as many people joining the call and it wouldn’t be anything close to the same experience as it was in the past,” Riehl said.

Senior class advisor Erin Wheeler believes, however, that the smaller number of students, approximately 50,  joining the call would help to further the impact of the event.

“I think it may have been more impactful because students weren’t forced to attend,” Wheeler said. “The only students who attended were those who were interested in hearing what the alumni had to say.”